Dylan streams

Recent live recordings of Dylan.

By Salon Staff
Published June 13, 2005 5:45PM (EDT)

I've spent the last hour ignoring my aversion to streaming audio and listening to Real Audio streams of Bob Dylan live performances from the impressive archive on his Web page. The selections stretch all the way back to 1961, but the emphasis is on recent performances, and the ones from the last few months are the most confounding and intriguing. Dylan seems to have temporarily given up on melody -- check out the 10-minute-long version of "Visions of Johanna" sung almost entirely on two notes -- to focus on tone (rasping and hollow, like the ghost of Tom Waits) and, above all, on phrasing. As he demonstrated so extraordinarily on "Love and Theft," Dylan has become ever more nimble and virtuosic in his phrasing, ducking and weaving and pirouetting around the beat with effortless grace and complete control. It's dazzling, and like nothing else I've ever heard.

Salon Staff

MORE FROM Salon Staff

Related Topics ------------------------------------------